For the past couple of months, activity here at the KF blog has been lowish. That is because -- having finally broken through a case of writer's block -- I have been working on the street-level, Nicene Creed based systematic theology survey that is intended to serve as a proof of concept course for the Associate-level programme that is a long-term project, previously discussed here at KF.
We can get an idea of the significance of all this by looking at a diagram and snippet from the latest unit, on the church in community:
Given our challenges, our location and our potential, a serious renewal and reformation movement of the Caribbean church and peoples would have significant potential for creating a viable and globally exportable discipleship and positive cultural transformation model for the church in the wider world. In addition, using similar estimation methods to the Chinese church's Back to Jerusalem vision, we easily have potential to field a Missionary effort of 8,000 as a "tithe" on our "reasonable" full time worker-equivalent potential of 1% of active Christians:
Here, the three triangles strategy sees the Caribbean as having two zones, the Afro- and Asio- Caribbean triangles to the North and West and to the South East respectively. We thus have people who descend from the peoples of the 10/40 Window and who through the gospel have across our painful history found redemption, renewal and empowerment. We thus can bridge North and South, East and West, and have a particular potential in the 10/40 Window, where we do not carry with us the taint of being associated with the history of colonial domination. (We were, after all, the first zone of European colonialisation, not the colonisers.)
We bear witness to what the gospel can do, and we are therefore in a position to reach out, to the North, and to the East.
The potential impact of a global missionary effort on that scope is to be seen in light of the scale of Paul's Missionary Company, which changed the course of history for the world. For, the number of the workers involved probably did not exceed 100 altogether, about one Century or a light Company. Similarly, in the 1840's just 100 former slave Jamaican Baptists went to West Africa as Missionaries and had considerable impact.
We are talking here about maybe eighty companies of similar size, or -- again comparing in terms of the scale of military units: a reinforced Legion or a light Division. Do-able.
So, why can't we do it again, but this time with the power of the global Internet behind us? (Cf. the MVAT Kit here.)That is one facet of the work.But there is more, for we are facing a major challenge in the region and urgently need to equip significant numbers of disciples to stand on the streets and to lead more soundly in our churches (not to mention, to function more effectively with practical, "tent-making" skills) in light of the two tidal wave challenges that face the region:. . . we are now in the age of Google, YouTube, blogs and other freely accessible web soap-box and forum technologies, Dan Brown and his The Da Vinci Code, the vituperative New Atheists, Radical IslamISTS, and many others.
As a result, we now face a flood of superficially persuasive and atmosphere-poisoning materials that target God, the Scriptures, Jesus, the Christian Faith and Christians today (including personal hate and slander sites) and much more. This backs up an unprecedented and rising tidal wave of direct and undermining attacks against the Christian faith in the Caribbean and elsewhere that we can find on our streets, on our verandahs, on our TV's and computers, in our schools and offices, and even in our churches.
A flood of attacks that finds us too often in a sad spiritual condition, and by and large utterly unprepared to soundly answer on the reason for the hope that we have:All of this leads to the significance of the NCSTS course:An historically-rooted "street-theology" survey and grounding of core Christian teaching, structured through the historic 325 and 381 AD Nicene Creed and rooted in key underlying biblical teachings such as 1 Cor 15:1 - 11 (c. 55 AD), Rom. 1:16 - 3:26 (c. 57), Heb. 1:1 - 14 (c. 63) and Isa 52:13 - 53:12 (c. 700 BC) . . . .Course Units
- Course Scope and Sequence --Draft
- PRELIMINARY: Some context and useful references -- an ongoing work in progress
- UNIT 1: Biblical Foundations of and core warrant for "the Faith once for all delivered to the saints"
- UNIT 2: The Gospel on Mars Hill: foundations for a Christian worldview, and for culture- transforming service
- UNIT 3: Our Anchorage in God
- UNIT 4: Man, sin, culture, chaos; need for redemption, reformation and restoration
- UNIT 5: The Restorer -- Christ: promised, prophesied and fulfilled
- UNIT 6: The Gospel & the salvation of the individual
- UNIT 7: Gospel and Spirit
- UNIT 8: Gospel, church, culture and community
- UNIT 9: The sins (and blessings) of Christendom
- UNIT 10: Discipleship
- UNIT 11: The culmination of all things
- UNIT 12: For such a time as this [NB: this last unit is still to be initially developed]The intent for courses like this is that they should be components of the proposed Associate in Arts, Concentration in Caribbean Christian Service, of approximately 60 credits; perhaps as follows:The NCSTS, of course, is one half of pillar no 2 above (i.e. of a 6-credit two-course sequence), the second part being an issues course, cf here for a slide collection that lays out intended content of that.The key technology for the programme is, as was discussed here at KF recently, the projected rise over the next year or so of seven-inch screen Android tablets usable with small keyboards, and coming in folders, for about US$100. which is now comparable to the cost of a single major College textbook:The key concept is to develop a cyber campus backed by a digital library that interacts with local micro-campus centres hosting multimedia seminar rooms connected to the broadband Internet, perhaps like this:To fully develop the envisioned programme, there will be a need for institutional support, content developers, for technology resource people, for partner churches and individual partners who are willing to invest in the vision in many ways.In weeks and months to come, DV, such and other matters will be taken up.So, now, the Mordecai challenge (as usual) is before us: why not now, why not here, why not us? END